Reintroduction of aminopyralid products will not lead to more manure problems
UK - June 17, 2010
Aminopyralid herbicides have been re-introduced this year to help grassland farmers deal with difficult to control weeds but with tight controls to prevent problems with manure management.
Aminopyralid herbicides are the most effective solutions to control dock, thistle, nettle, and buttercup infestations in grassland. To ensure that their use does not lead to a repeat of the issues seen previously, their availability is now tightly controlled with a significantly amended label and a stewardship scheme which ensures farmers are aware of the implications for subsequent manure management. The herbicides cannot be used on grassland destined for hay and silage nor on grassland grazed by horses. This year sales are restricted to Scotland, South West England and Northern Ireland.
There have been some incidents this year of manure containing aminopyralid ending up on gardens and allotments.
“This is disappointing and upsetting for those affected,” said Dow AgroSciences principal biologist Andy Bailey. “Although of small comfort, we would reassure anyone affected that this manure has not come from use this season under the new controls. It is a reflection of manure generated from past treatment and kept in heaps for more than a year. Also, the past long winter means old stocks of forage will have been consumed on livestock farms.”
The new restriction in aminopyralid use will mean any manure returns immediately to pasture where it will cause no harm and cannot leave the farm. The stringent use restrictions are explained in detail to every professional farmer who wants to buy a product and a written confirmation of understanding must be completed.
Dow AgroSciences’ advice to concerned farmers or gardeners remains the same – to check carefully the provenance of any manure being used where sensitive crops, such as potatoes, peas, beans and carrots, may be grown.
“If anyone supplying manure cannot state with certainty that no aminopyralid-based product (sold as Forefront, Pharaoh or Banish) was used on the forage from which the manure resulted, then it is best not to accept any supply,” says Mr Bailey. “For anyone who has manure and is concerned, please contact us through our dedicated website www.manurematters.co.uk.This site also contains detailed information and frequently asked questions for gardeners, horse owners and professional grassland farmers.”